The United States needs a stronger Europe. With China’s rise, Russia’s resurgence, and America’s soft-power image tarnished by its bungled domestic handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States should revive the transatlantic alliance. But a return to the more predictable days before President Donald Trump took office, when Washington led and European capitals were supposed to follow, is not sufficient anymore. Regardless of whether Trump is re-elected or Joe Biden becomes the next president, the United States will need Europe to act as a genuine partner that can step up and out onto the world stage, on its own when necessary. For that to happen, Washington should change its traditional approach to the transatlantic alliance.

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This article was originally published in War on the Rocks.